Bob Jones on the living wage

Yesterday Bob Jones gave his considered opinion on the living wage.

He has spent some considerable time talking to retailers about costs in their businesses, which led him to a discussion on wages and staffing:

My inquiry as to the best employees brought an unsurprising answer – new immigrants by a country mile. What particularly interested me was the salaries for what’s essentially menial work. In most cases they’re on the minimum wage. Any more and they’re out of business, he said, and I believe him.

I mention all of this in the context of the absurdly titled living wage clamour, the noise invariably coming from leftish critics not employing anyone, nor ever likely to. There are exceptions. Two leftie Wellington city councillors, respective owners of small city retail food businesses, led the charge recently for menial task council employees to be paid the so-called living wage. Inquiry however, revealed their own employees were on the minimum wage.

“We’d go broke,” they wailed when their hypocrisy was exposed. It was classic left do as I say, not as I do, double standards. Everyone benefits from a high wage economy as it increases spending power and thus the economy. But it also necessarily increases prices which no one wants to meet, thus shop assistants are the lowest paid sector in the work force, despite being one of the largest. ?

The answer is elementary. If you want the $18.50 “living wage” or better, choose employment paying it, rather than complain. That requires initial sacrifice, whether by studying for a professional career or accepting temporary low-paid trade or other specialist training.

It’s that simple and is the path followed by the vast majority of people, depending on their personal ambitions. Yet for that initial sacrifice, they’re taxed – in diverse forms, be it housing, healthcare and much more – to supplement top-up survivability for those unwilling to make that effort, this constituting fairness in the eyes of the Cunliffes of our society. Theft would be more accurate.

A few months ago, I suggested kids should be encouraged with the catch-cry, “learn and earn”. In fact, most teens have the wit to work this out for themselves and such preaching is probably unnecessary. But let’s end the fashionable clamour from some quarters that there’s something essentially unfair about the inevitable outcome of the absolutely accurate biblical “reap what you sow” aphorism.

Want a better jobs?

Don’t expect the government to provide one for you. Get trained, get experience and go and enjoy your better job.


– NZ Herald